[Click here for an interactive chart of gold prices]
The US dollar, meanwhile, lost ground after the inflation report and was heading for its worst week in more than a month, making gold less expensive for other currency holders.
Data on Thursday showed that US consumer prices fell for the first time in more than 2-1/2 years in December.
“Tactically, (gold) and many of the markets have a hangover from yesterday’s exuberant rally on the CPI,” Phillip Streible, chief market strategist at Blue Line Futures in Chicago, explained to Reuters.
Following the data release, Fed policymakers expressed relief that inflation continued to ease in December, paving the way for a possible step down to a quarter point interest rate increase at its next policy meeting in February.
“We believe that the (gold) market will initially take a breather until it becomes clearer whose prediction of the future course of US monetary policy is more accurate – the market’s or the Fed’s,” Commerzbank analysts said in a note.
(With files from Reuters)